Belle Isle 23

$310.00 - $1,540.00
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a 23' classic mahogany runabout

CATEGORY: Classic Mahogany Runabouts
CONSTRUCTION: Cold-Molded/Epoxy Planking: Barrelback

Belle Isle…our largest authentic barrelback design…uses the same type of amateur-proven construction as all our other classic mahogany runabouts and can be built in two different lengths. Husky full-length motor stringers and ½" bottom combine to allow for ample powering and load carrying ability.

For those unfamiliar with the type, the barrelback stern is a semi-oval or elliptical shape, like half a barrel, with a lovely seamless blending of the tumblehome topsides into the deck, side-to-side.

You can build your own Belle Isle for a fraction of the cost of restoring some questionable original or buying a new production replica, all while ending up with a better built boat. No rabbets, steam bending or lofting is required.

Beyond its authentic styling is a modern wood/epoxy hull that's actually well within the abilities of the first-time do-it-yourselfer. We say it will be a better boat because, when compared to boats of the past built with traditional planking methods, our boats are free of leaks, rot, high maintenance, flexing hulls, and other problems resulting from such outdated planking methods. Our methods result in leak-free hulls that are stiff, strong, lightweight, durable, and easy to take care of without need for any caulking.

Power comes from a direct drive motor located amidships. Usually gasoline motors are used, but diesel is an option as long as weight won't exceed that of the largest gasoline type that might be found within our listed displacement ratings. However, we advise against overpowering the boat; practical speeds should be limited to the 30's and 40's.

Plans with instructions aimed at the amateur craftsman include all the details along with material listing, fastening schedule, and resource list to help you track down what you need. Also provided are FULL SIZE PATTERNS for the sawn frame and backbone members, so lofting is not required.

"BELLE ISLE 23" body plan shows barrelback stern

Click here to view an awesome builder website "Billy's Belle Isle 23"

NOTE: Length option is done by respacing frames proportionately. These procedures are covered in the instructions, and the option comes automatically with the plans - no need to specify on your order.


Can you build your own Mahogany Runabout? Read our article to find out.

Length overall:
Length option:
6' 8"
Draft with prop:
Freeboard forward:
2' 5"
Freeboard aft:
2' 5"
Hull weight (approx):
1100 lbs.
Motor type:
V6; V8
Motor (cu. in.):
Fuel capacity:
45 gals.
Cockpit size - L x W - Forward:
2'6" x 5'8"
Cockpit size - L x W - Mid:
2'6" x 5'8"
Cockpit size - L x W - Aft:
2-5" x 5'8"
330 cu. in max for 22' length

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